Shake Your Head: Enslaved & Knight’s Contract

It was a complete fluke last week when I stumbled upon an advertisement for this game:

I’ll admit: I clicked on it because I saw a male character running around shirtless. :P But when I started reading the site, I discovered that the game was first previewed at E3 earlier this year. So sunk my eyes into a few screenshots and trailers.

Here’s the premise of Enslaved, according to its website:

“Trip, a technologically savvy young woman has been imprisoned by a slave ship but manages to escape using her mental prowess. Monkey, a strong, brutish loner and fellow prisoner also gets free by virtue of his raw power and brawn. Trip quickly realizes that Monkey is her ticket to freedom and is her only hope to survive her perilous journey back home. She hacks a slave headband and fits it on Monkey, linking them together. If she dies, he dies and her journey has now become his. “

Now today, while perusing (one of my dailies), I stumbled upon the headline for a game called Knight’s Contract, which was recently featured at the Tokyo Game Show. Seeing that it was a game within the fantasy genre, I clicked on the preview article and here’s what I found:

“You play as the invincible warrior Heinrich, who has entered into a contract with a resurrected witch named Gretchen to protect her from harm. If you’re going to sign up a protector, you might as well sign up someone who can’t be killed and wields an oversized scythe, right?

But traveling with a witch has a downside. Because Heinrich has signed a sarcred* contract to protect Gretchen, he can’t let her fall in battle. If she does, it’s game-over. If that sounds like Knights Contract is essentially one big escort mission, well, it sort of is.”

Wait a sec. Didn’t I just read a game about this exact same thing? Literally: THE EXACT SAME THING?

Okay… calm down, Eric. There have been plenty of examples these types of coincidences in the past. Infamous and Prototype. The Illusionist and The Prestige. Surely it could be that two people, from two game development studios, just happened to have the exact same idea around the same time, right? So one might think until they found out which studio was responsible:

That’s right: Namco is publishing both games. And both games ARE THE SAME.

What on earth are you doing, Namco? Did you run out of steam only to have to lick the condensation off the window? You’re recycling the EXACT SAME IDEA!

Here’s what I propose everyone do: pick your favourite outfit, and this October, go to your favourite electronics store and purchase Enslaved: Odyssey to the West. In one year’s time, put on the same outfit, go back to the same store, buy Knight’s Contract, and feel ridiculous for being a sucker.

Remember how I’ve proclaimed that the video game industry recycles ideas and desperately needs new creative minds?

Point proven.


*That typo belongs to IGN, not me. :P


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